Open Mike 11/03/2018

Written By: - Date published: 6:00 am, March 11th, 2018 - 188 comments
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188 comments on “Open Mike 11/03/2018”

  1. AsleepWhileWalking 1

    AMP refuses to pay up.

    “Insurance litigator Andrew Hooker has taken on the case for free, saying while refusing to pay out on a lapsed policy legal, Dishington was “a dead man walking” and the insurer should show some compassion.

    “The very thing that led to him not paying the premium was what killed him.”

    Victim had paid AMP $70,000 over several years before he became incapacitated.

    • Ed 1.1

      The government should boot out parasitical private insurers and take over business themselves.

      • solkta 1.1.1

        Yes, the gummint should immediately nationalise all insurance companies, along with banks and law firms.

        • Pat

          the governments insurance record is nothing to rely upon…..I submit EQC and Southern Response

          • Keepcalmcarryon


            • Pat

              that too

            • Ed

              So change the government to one that doesn’t believe in neoliberalism.that was good until Key and Judge got their hands on it.
              The solution again is simple.
              Abandon neoliberalism.

          • Draco T Bastard

            It used to be better back when the government wasn’t using insurance and all other state services as a cash cow.

            The problem is that the government stopped acting as a government and started acting as a business.

            • Pat

              “The problem is that the government stopped acting as a government and started acting as a business.”

              Thats true enough but there does remain one advantage even so….and thats the government will not declare bankruptcy (or at least not at the drop of a hat) and walk away from any proved liability

        • Ed

          You are starting to appreciate the need to rid the country of neoliberalism.

          • solkta

            So we didn’t have private banks, law firms and insurance companies before neoliberalism?

            • Ed

              Of course we did.
              However banks were deregulated then.
              You know this, so why are you wasting my time?

              I have little time for the rabid defenders of an economic system which will bring about the 6th extinction.

            • Draco T Bastard

              Yes we did. We also had state insurance, banks and law firms.

              • veutoviper

                And Public Trust.

                • DoublePlusGood

                  These days the public trust just screws little old ladies out of their inheritances.

                  • veutoviper

                    I know I am one – that is a little old lady who is shortly to be an ex customer of Public Trust to protect what I hope to be able to leave to my chosen beneficiaries.

          • mauī

            He may have spent a little too much time in Cuba over the holidays. It’s good he’s coming around though.

            • Ed

              If we could renationalise the banks, we would be far less vulnerable to international financial interests.
              If you want to know who really runs NZ, follow the money.
              And a lot of that money is Chinese.

              • Antoine

                What you got against Chinese?

              • Enough is Enough

                What is wrong with the Chinese.

                I see you are throwing accustaion at others about being racist (without providing a quote)

              • solkta

                If we could renationalise the banks

                We’ve always had private banks in New Zealand.

                • mau

                  “The government’s ownership of the BNZ, and use of it as its banker, allowed it to become the largest trading bank. It was fully nationalised in 1945.

                  An 1865 law which established the Post Office Savings Bank also curbed the rights of other savings banks and enabled it to absorb competitors. By the mid-1950s the Post Office Savings Bank controlled around 80% of the personal savings market.”


                  We may have always had private banks, but we’ve also had strong historical Government intervention going by the above.

                • mauī

                  “The government’s ownership of the BNZ, and use of it as its banker, allowed it to become the largest trading bank. It was fully nationalised in 1945.

                  An 1865 law which established the Post Office Savings Bank also curbed the rights of other savings banks and enabled it to absorb competitors. By the mid-1950s the Post Office Savings Bank controlled around 80% of the personal savings market.”


                  Maybe those private banks haven’t always had such a strong influence though..

                • savenz

                  The issue is New Zealand’s banks set a sector profit record in 2017, their profits rising 7.35 per cent to $5.1 billion.

                  Most of those banks are not NZ owned banks any more therefore NZ does not get that profit that we would get if it was owned by a NZ company.

                  Apparently NZ banks are one of the most profitable in the world!

                  (Possibly a complete lack of government regulation, such as not even requiring the bank to guarantee cash deposits, have helped us achieve this dubious honour).

                  The now profitable (mostly Australian owned) banks were sold off by our government for a song in the 1980’s and 1990’s, like Bank of New Zealand, etc….

        • Draco T Bastard


          • greywarshark

            Has listed under Yes the link to –

            Why insurance should be a state monopoly

            Which contains the statement –
            “A state monopoly can be run at close to cost.”

            This applies to more than insurance. It can also be applied to state housing.
            It was only National’s cult rigidity that caused it to bring state housing up to market level in stages to make it less noticeable and less of a financial shock to everyone.

            Housing could have a base housing cost set at new based on costs. Then the aim should be to recover that cost over many years on an amortised basis, plus an allowance for repairs and maintenance each year, these to be carried out regularly. There is no reason for state housing to be provided free, the people in them may be entitled to government pensions, and out of those they might need rental housing and if it is government housing they would be able to afford it, it might be somewhat cheaper than private, but sufficient for government retrieval of cost plus.

      • james 1.1.2

        You have listed a lot of businesses now Ed that you think that the government should take over.

        Banks, Law firms, insurers.

        Any others?

        • Ed

          I would certainly ban hate speech by virulent racists as exhibited by you yesterday .
          You hit a new low.

          • james

            Really – Please site any hate speech from me yesterday.

            Oh and answer the question.

  2. BLiP 2

    A message to everyone from the women of the world . . .

  3. patricia bremner 3

    Yes change it to man and it becomes even more obvious. LOL LOL

  4. savenz 4

    The new style of census seems to have been a disaster. This is what the country is coming to.

    I didn’t fill it in. But is sounds like it was designed with extensive consultation from Wellington committees, hence completely out of touch with modern life.

    There is a certain irony about worrying about A4 sized mould in a census while not actually understanding the vast amounts of people who don’t even have a home to live in to even be included in the census or even want to be identified, or to calculate the hours of their ‘main’ job when people don’t even have a main job anymore.

    Paul Little: Hard to make sense of the Census

    • eco maori 4.1

      ECO MAORIs Kiwi Bank ac 389019048573100 Please help me to sort the nz police out
      I decided against trying to use PayPal to receive donations .I decided to copy
      Thestandards safe way of appealing and receiving donations I set up a Kiwi Bank AC
      So he tangata the people of Aoteraoroa New Zealand who support ECO MAORI can use internet banking to make donations and know that there bank accounts are safe after they have made a donation . ECO MAORI will use the donations to SUE the nz police for all the breaches to mine and my Whano Privacy Rights & Human Rights a lot of people can see this has been happening to ECO MAORI when I win my case I will set up a
      Charitable Trust and I will pay the money that I used and any extra donations into this Trust account and appeal to anyone else in Aoteraoroa who need help with finance to SUE the nz police for there in justices I will copy bank statements on this site to let he tangata the people know that ECO MAORI has Honest Honorable and transparent intentions to use your hard earned Putea Money. .
      Kia Kaha Ka kite ano

      • eco maori 4.1.1

        Good morning Corin Dan from Q & A on TV1 I’v had to face up to the silver back effect and buy me some reading glasses lol.
        Its assume that good fortune shines down on a Labour lead Governments finances the working common persons Government .
        What happened to a Government that was all about the wealthy well you already know the answer to that question Te tangata Te tangata Te tangata treating the people humanly and fairly look after Papatunanuku and all her beautiful creatures and good fortune is what you will receive .
        shonky gave the wealthy who did not need more money more money tax cuts and were did that come from well the poor common person he put GST up 2. 1/2 % .
        shonkys famous words were I will not put up GST .
        Business people you will have to use your initiative and management will have to earn the money and become more productive to support a higher wage like OUR Australian cousins do. Pay more money for the common person and Ladys equally then there is more money for business . Ka kite ano P.S I believe there should be quote rs for ladys in management at 25% Kia kaha Eco maori will still voice his opinion when I see anyone taking us down the wrong path

        • eco maori

          I got mahi kai pai

          • eco maori

            Here is a industry that would increase OUR gross domestic product by 1 Billion dollars in 3 years it will creat hundreds of jobs for our rual communitys that have had a sharp decline in income in the last 30 years .I have seen this decline with my own eyes .When I was a young man there were Kiwi fruit orchards vineyards all around the East Coast Ngati Purou sheep and Beef farms were all well mantained and employment was a lot higher than it is at the minute.
            I can even remember the Helicopter flying Rob Muldoon to Rangitokia or Tiktiki I was on the other side of the Waiapu river at Tikapa this is how much Mana Te Taiwhiti had in those days . This industry will creat income with low impact to the enviroment ka kite ano


            • eco maori

              This is what happens when one does not learn the culture and does not show respect to that culture the people who are investing in there country lose out big time its time we respected these great people and there culture well thats ECO MAORI view enough said here is a link to Newsroom .

     Ka kite ano P.S its THE MONTH of the wood tiger

              • eco maori

                If teaching was a male dominated sector of OUR society they would be payed a lot more here is a link showing the disparities of in come between Ladys and men this has to change as the jobs aren’t easier because someone is a lady if fact its harder for Ladys in male dominated industrys.

       Ka kite ano

                • eco maori

                  Good evening News Hub on TV 3 well I have already written about some of the topics you have covered to night .
                  The Poverty Bay name change is a topic I would like to write about te tangata will already know my opinion of this the Original name would be nice .
                  Celebrating the NZ Aotearoa wars will educate all Kiwis about what happened and about OUR Maori culture I hope all Kiwis will be proud of our Maori culture as ECO MAORI is Kia kaha ka kite ano P.S its been a good weekend for our sports ka pai

      • james 4.1.2

        You have been publishing this a lot recently (and the previous give-a-little and paypal).

        How is it going?

        Got a lawyer to help you as yet? You know a lot will help on a contingency basis if they think you have a case – which means you wont need the money up front.

    • Carolyn_Nth 4.2

      I requested paper forms over a week ago (it said it would take upp to a week to get it to me). Still haven’t received it. Sent them a message yesterday.
      I will fill it out.

      But can see how the many homeless would find it to much hassle to find a way to get access to fill in the form (on or offline).

      Seriously! Conservatory?!

      • savenz 4.2.1

        It’s part of our +rock star+ economy that the MSM and government tells us we have.

        If you only ask the right questions and send it to people who feel comfortable in their conservatory with good internet access and reliable postal service, Wellington gets the results they want.

      • David Mac 4.2.2

        Hi Carolyn, how were the desperate homeless folks’ census statistics gathered in the past? I don’t think foot soldier collectors toured under bridges and parks after dark.

        The majority of New Zealanders considered homeless have letterboxes. I believe we are apparently the worst in the OECD because our statistics include people like me when I was living in luxury at my sister’s place.

        Of course we need to address our problems but to do so we need an accurate handle on the problem.

        This footage from downtown Los Angeles Christmas Day a few months ago.

        • McFlock

          For the previous census, statsnz did indeed have people taking forms around known sleeping areas. Dunno about the one just been.

          I quite liked the qualitative lifestyle questions in this census. Each one individually sounds a bit silly, but if you’re a person in a dwelling with widespread mould, no conservatory, and you have difficulty cleaning yourself (which points to flexibility and activity levels) then that’s a different picture from someone who’s perfectly fine in a clean, dry home with a conservatory or two.

          • Draco T Bastard

            For the previous census, statsnz did indeed have people taking forms around known sleeping areas. Dunno about the one just been.

            Yep, there was. Also going round known freedom camping spots to DoC huts. The census has always taken weeks to complete.

          • savenz

            If you can’t clean yourself up, how reliable are your other faculties?

            Also I think the problem is, the census won’t be an accurate picture because there are serious issues with how the census itself was run and people either did not know about the changes of arbitrary deciding to get people to go onto the Internet rather than using people going door to door as in previous censuses.

            It you count the homeless, couch surfers, illegal immigrants, people who can’t or won’t use a computer, people who didn’t know about it, (easy to do if you seldom use mail and don’t watch TV) and non English speakers then you probably have about 25% of people who won’t complete it.

            So it’s not gonna provide any answers that are meaningful to the government.

            People and paper would have been better like the old days, but these days it’s easier to pretend that forms mean everybody’s needs and there is a zealous willingness to complete them. (Possibly a Wellington curse).

            • McFlock

              Cleaning requires joint flexibility and/or physical proportions within a certain range. Next time you sit down on the loo, pretend you can’t bend your back without shards of pain, or that you can’t rotate your shoulder to raise your hand up to 45 degrees. As if you’d had a vehicle injury years ago or arthritis were well-entrenched. And even if someone can’t fill in the forms, there’s provision for the forms to be filled in by caregivers (not that a physical disability comes close to meaning one doesn’t have the “faculties” to fill in a form).

              The couch surfers get the forms from the people who own the couch. The homeless are sought out by census workers. As are immigrants. After all that, the results are compared with testing exercises and previous results to calculate the estimated resident population (to account for internal migration on the day and some systemic issues).

              If this census does indeed miss 25% of the population compared to the one five years ago, it would stand out like a dog’s bollocks. Most of the organisation was done under the nats, so we’ll see, but I reckon you’ll find that they know what dwellings exist and will be a-knocking on any that haven’t filled in the forms.

          • David Mac

            Ahhh ok, cool, thanks.

            Yes, Graeme pointed out an aspect of this new online system that I hadn’t considered. With the paper version they state things like ‘If you answered Yes move on to the next question’. If answering ‘No’ the additional questions were all visible. With the online version, if answering ‘Yes’ we don’t know of the additional questions. I quite like seeing the additional questions but in the name of KISS I can see benefits.

            Yes there seemed to be quite a focus on “So what sort of houses are we all living in?” I can see that generating useful stats. Polls and surveys seem to be all over the place and to go forward as best we can, we need to know where we’re at now.

    • Graeme 4.3

      One of the changes with the move online is that the sub-menus and questions are now hidden to unaffected people. In the old days of paper it was all there but you’d be directed to specific sections base on your answer.

      One question that had me wondering was the Maori decent one, 3 options yes, no, don’t know. I selected don’t know as I have several people with no past down the tree. I then got directed to a question asking if I knew my iwi. Now that should have been picked up in re-release testing, which brings the whole thing into question. What other errors where in the thing?

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        They might have been playing it safe in the face of human politics and existential crises.

        StatsNZ have written screeds about how to deal with people who put their ethnicity down as “New Zealander”, for example.

    • james 4.4

      “I didn’t fill it in”

      Why not?

      Do you not have a social and legal obligation to do so?

      • Ed 4.4.1

        Social obligation.
        You don’t know what that is.

        • james

          I do which is why I mentioned it.

          Are you going to try and start flame wars with personal insults everywhere?

          • Drowsy M. Kram

            Ah James – never change! You are astonishingly predictable for a human being(?) Thank goodness you’re here to extinguish those ‘flame wars’.

            Regarding “personal insults”, I have a simple question about the opening sentence of a comment you made yesterday.

            “That shows what kind of bitch you [Anne] are.”

            /doofus-of-the-week-march-10-2018/#comment-1459008 (James @

            My question: Is this sentence misogynistic, when stripped of its off-colour ‘tit-for-tat’ camouflage?

            “I see you true colours, shining through”, so please consider upgrading your camouflage.

            • James

              If you quote the entire thing it is obvious.

              A partial quote is just poor form and dishonest.

              • Drowsy M. Kram

                Does the quote in this link convey your intent, James, or do you want more?

                Doofus of the week March 10, 2018

                “As it stands, however, James’ opening (‘shock jock’) sentence is a nasty misogynistic slur”.

                • james

                  yes – Quote the entire post and you will see how obvious it is.

                  Funny how Ive had to ask twice now – yet you refuse to post it. Could be just be that it would show your post up to be dishonest?

                  • Drowsy M. Kram

                    Thank-you fior inviting me to quote your entire comment, I may do that in a future Open Mike.

                    Your continuing failure to acknowledge your misunderstanding of ‘tit for tat’, which was the only justification you offered for your initial misogynistic slur:

                    “That shows what kind of bitch you [Anne] are.”

                    is genuinely puzzling.

                    Maybe the light will dawn if I being responses to your more objectional ‘twits’ with the following:

                    That shows what kind of a bitch* James is.
                    *Note I’m using that term only because James has used this term against a person he does not like on this site. It’s called ‘just deserts’.

                    The remedy is in your hands. I predict that you will continue to maintain that there is nothing wrong with your initial misogynistic attack on Anne.

      • David Mac 4.4.2

        Yes, I wonder about the wisdom of publically claiming a refusal to complete the census. This from a recent Stuff article…

        “If you don’t, here’s what Stats NZ has to say: “After census day, any household who is yet to complete their census forms will be contacted again by letter. … People who choose not to fill out their census forms can be fined between $50 and $500.”

      • Draco T Bastard 4.4.3

        Yes he does.

      • savenz 4.4.4

        I didn’t fill it in because I didn’t know it was on, I have everything automated and use email mostly to keep in touch, therefore seldom check paper mail and I don’t normally watch TV, let alone adds.

        Nothing on Facebook and did not notice any adds on The Standard or Daily Blog for it (2nd and 3rd ranking blogs) which are my NZ blog reads, or the guardian (apparently they have 10% NZ readership) therefore it was a pretty bad effort in my view if the census people were trying to reach an online community that does not watch TV or read right wing propaganda on a regular basis.

        Apparently you can still fill it in, but I only noticed that because I saw a TV add as I was fast forwarding about the census.

        Personally I can see A LOT of problems with their assumptions.

        I’m a native English speaker what did they do for non English speakers in particular ones who don’t want to be identified or are visiting.

        The other day I posted a link with some tenants who trashed a house. I really can’t see how people like that are going to be reached by this style of census, can you really see people logging onto the internet and filling it out who are in dire straits or who have major issues going on?

        As for going around homeless people, didn’t the John Key government laughably go around a few cars, to do that to determine that homeless people did not want any help?

        We have just found that our immigration statistic are based on people signing a form on their intentions on entering the country not actually on actual records of who is really here in this country.

        Many people have multiple passports and can apparently be deported and just pop back again for years under a new name. No wonder OZ and the UK are getting tired of all our citizens piggy backing into their countries on NZ passports.

        These people live on another planet if you think our government amateur attempts are the way to gather data from a widening group of people who live here.

        • Draco T Bastard

          I didn’t fill it in because I didn’t know it was on

          That was a problem. Advertising can only reach those who engage with the advertising medium.

          Still, now that you know about it you can ring 0800 CENSUS and organise an access code.

          Personally I can see A LOT of problems with their assumptions.

          And I can see a lot of problems with your assumptions and they all revolve around your ignorance.

          As for going around homeless people, didn’t the John Key government laughably go around a few cars, to do that to determine that homeless people did not want any help?

          What’s one got to do with the other? Especially when John was actually lying about it.

          The other day I posted a link with some tenants who trashed a house. I really can’t see how people like that are going to be reached by this style of census

          I can’t see them being reached by any sort of census. Or do you think that census people should endanger their lives by approaching these people?

          These people live on another planet if you think our government amateur attempts are the way to gather data from a widening group of people who live here.

          Would you have preferred John Key’s and National’s preferred idea of dropping the census because they watched the populace enough to already have the data?

    • Draco T Bastard 4.5

      The new style of census seems to have been a disaster.

      Actually, it’s been very successful.

      I didn’t fill it in.

      Please note that doing so is a legal requirement and that not doing so may come with a fine.

      But is sounds like it was designed with extensive consultation from Wellington committees, hence completely out of touch with modern life.

      Actually, it sounds like you’re talking out your arse. Nearly three million people had filled it out online by the end of the 6th so that would be very much inline with modern life.

      There is a certain irony about worrying about A4 sized mould in a census while not actually understanding the vast amounts of people who don’t even have a home to live in to even be included in the census or even want to be identified, or to calculate the hours of their ‘main’ job when people don’t even have a main job anymore.

      An A4 sized patch of mould can represent major problems with the house and as we have a housing crisis and houses that are killing people I’d say that it was fairly important.
      People who don’t live in houses are being included.
      People who put zero hours in their main job are noted as being unemployed. What most people don’t seem to understand is that it’s possible to extrapolate other answers from the data given.

      • savenz 4.5.1

        Nearly three million people had filled it out online by the end of the 6th… we have over 4.5 million people here, so roughly a third have not filled it out.

        But I sure you are right and it’s considered wildly successful by the bureaucrats having not managed to reach 33% so far.

        (Against paper, which was probably a lot more successful).

        • David Mac

          Change and our reluctance to engage with it gets tougher as we age….The death of Freddie Mercury and John Bonham was the end of decent music. Remember when we repaired electric jugs, irons and taps…ahhhh the good old days.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Nearly three million people had filled it out online by the end of the 6th… we have over 4.5 million people here, so roughly a third have not filled it out.

          Which is a lie. Nearly three million people filled it out online but many more had filled it out on paper but they’re going to take a while to come in.

          (Against paper, which was probably a lot more successful).

          [Citation Needed]

          As I said – it’s always taken weeks and months to do the census.

          • David Mac

            You’re a really good advocate for the census Draco, I like your genuine commitment. The extrapolation of census statistics would do my head in but I could imagine you digging it. Would you entertain a full-time gig there?

            • Draco T Bastard

              Depends upon what role is being offered. There is a reason why I just completed a Bch Comp Sci major programming after all.

              • David Mac

                Isn’t that an ideal qualification for a handful of very specialised roles in a place like NZ stats?

                OK we need a plan Draco. From help desk to an ajar door in that dept?

                Is that the ideal outcome?

                • David Mac

                  I’m not taking the piss here Draco, I like you. I’d like to bounce some ideas off you. If it’s ok with you I wonder if an author here is able to send my log-in email address to you?

                  I might be barking up a disinterested tree, that’s cool too Draco. I still like you. Bastard.

              • funstigator

                Well done on gaining a useful qualification. I await the announcement of a Govt job (because private sector bad) with a salary just enough to live on (cos profit bad). Alternatively massive voluntary tax payments. Cos lots of tax good.

    • Barfly 5.1

      He founded it presumably assisted greatly in funding it but I greatly doubt he is CEO and am certain he wouldn’t be head of HR so why are you deciding to piss on him for the faults of middle management type muppets employed by it?

      • Ed 5.1.1

        If you did a modicum of research or had a slight amount of knowledge, you would know Bono has form.

        • james

          So in this instance – there is zero allegation against Bono, There is nothing showing he was involved in lack of investigations etc. Nothing at all to infer he has done anything wrong at all.

          He did however help fund a charity that has done a lot of good and one assumes invested a lot of time and financial support to it in order to help people.

          Yet he sums up everything that is wrong with the liberal Elite.

          Sorry – you do not make sense.

          • Ed

            I would not expect you to understand me.
            And I have no intention of explaining myself to you after your overt racism yesterday.

            • james

              “your overt racism yesterday.”

              again – please quote it.

              • weka

                Ok you two,

                James, you obviously know what Ed is referring to, so stop being an idiot.

                Ed, while I think that James’ comments yesterday were ‘casually’ racist, I don’t see what that has to do with the conversations here. You look like you are flaming, so I suggest you pull your head in as well.

                Both of you can take this as a moderator warning. If you can’t play nicely I will take you both out of the sandpit for a time. This petty flaming puts other people off and adds nothing to the debates.

              • Stunned mullet

                Accusations of racism is Ed’s latest tactic to not engage with anyone who dares to not agree with his every utterance.

                I find Ed amusing, albeit a little bit tragic.

                • OncewasTim

                  As I do you. And I say that given your comments on exploited immigrants who apparently should just learn to ‘move on’ in true H1/H2 pragmatism…after having been bullshiited to by agencies of/or by agencies the NZ state is responsible for.
                  Munned Stullet….move on man, cut your losses…. stop pushing shit uphill.
                  Forget the lifetime of earnings you’ve attained…
                  Nah man…you’re fault you were conned by NZ govt agency approved consiltants….move on….start again ya lazy munter.
                  Actually @SM, i used to take you at face value till I realised….fill in the rest for yourself

            • weka

              please read my comment to James for a moderation note.

          • Draco T Bastard

            Yet he sums up everything that is wrong with the liberal Elite.

            It is. If we didn’t have the rich, and that includes Bono, then we wouldn’t have need of charities to address the problems that the rich create by their simple existence.

            • Ed

              One example of Bono’s form.
              He is a tax dodger.

              ‘Inside Bono’s boundless hypocrisy’

              ‘Bono (and his charity One) earned kudos for insisting countries, corporations and people pay taxes in pursuit of a fairer society. In 2011, Bono, 57, who, according to CNN has an estimated net worth of $590 million, further angered his countrymen when he espoused the values of Ireland’s 12.5 percent corporate tax breaks. He went on the record to claim that these breaks for multi-billion dollar companies had brought Ireland the “only prosperity we’ve ever known.” He had a point, but as the locals noted, Bono wasn’t even giving the country a meager 12.5 percent any longer.’


    • Ed 5.2

      More evidence of the duplicitous U2 lead singer.
      The Irish hate him.
      Because he is a tax dodger.

      ‘But to huge sections of the Irish population, Bono is about as welcome as cold sores and spam email. How can that be?’

      ‘it’s another issue that really dogs the band: their tax arrangements. In 2006, U2 moved part of their business to the Netherlands, where the tax rate on royalty earnings is more favourable for artists. When you operate on U2’s financial scale, this is a major detail. Ireland was scalded by the global 2008 financial crash; communities were eroded by austerity, while the band’s reputation as “tax dodgers” persisted. As People Before Profit party TD Bríd Smith says: “Bono is seen as part of that cohort of very wealthy people who avoid paying tax in this country but enjoy the fruits of being of this country.”

  5. Sanctuary 6

    Interesting speech from Jeremy Corbyn to Scottish Labour. Starting off with a reference to the Spanish Civil War(!) and using terms like comrade to address the audience, and socialism to describe the party.

    The themes of ending austerity, national renewal, a genuine economic alternative and hope for a better society in the future are what appeals to youth.

    At 11:30 he starts to talk about Brexit and makes some interesting comments. Labour seems to have accepted Brexit – I don’t think Corbyn was really ever that keen on the United States of Neoliberal Europe anyway – and is seeking to paint the Tories as using Brexit for an exercise in disaster capitalism.

    I don’t fancy his chances on getting a decent new customs union deal and retaining the single market with the EU. The idea Britain can regulate the importation of cheap Labour and remain in the customs union and single market seems fanciful to me. I don’t think Corbyn has yet grasped the nature of the European antipathy to the UK.

    The EU bureaucracies response to Brexit so far has been arrogant, high handed and rigid. Talking to Europeans in Holland, Spain, Germany and France the public are kinda over the British hating on the EU anyway, and are sad the Brits leaving but over the moaning from them when they were in. The EU technocrats have got nothing to gain in cutting the British a good deal and a lot to lose if they make leaving the march to a centralised, technocrat run Europe look like a viable alternative.

    Corbyn’s EU policy hinges on his promise of getting a good deal for Britain. Time will tell! But I support the idea of Britain leaving the EU if the EU will not allow the UK Labour party to carry out socialist reforms.

    • KJT 6.1

      The EU has already shown it’s dedication to, keeping the power of banks, opposing Labour rights and community Democracy, and the ruthless bankrupting of any country that does not carry out Neo-liberal “reforms”.

      The EU’s biggest problem with Britain leaving, is the population of other EU countries seeing what can happen when Socialist “Democracy” returns to Britain, under Corbyn.

    • greywarshark 6.2

      Sanctuary it was Dundee’s large contribution of fighters to the Spanish Civil War that he was referring to, because he was speaking in Dundee.

      And he kept referring to ‘our movement’ And he praised Ann somebody who got 70% of some vote, and that she was only the second woman to become Rector of some university. I think he was touching base with all the things that Labour Dundee had to be proud of.

      I haven’t got time to listen to it properly and indeed i can’t hear clearly even though I have my sound options open fully – my hearing usually pretty good. So thanks for making this available. Others will no doubt get a lot from it.

  6. greywarshark 7

    Some very good interview on Wallace Chapman this morning.

    Treasury talking about a more realistic fairer economic system here?
    Gabriel Makhlouf: natural capital and national wellbeing
    From Sunday Morning, 8:37 am today
    Listen duration 22′ :06″
    Recently Treasury announced it plans to measure the wellbeing of the nation as part of its Living Standards Framework. The Secretary to the Treasury, Gabriel Makhlouf, outlines how it will work.

    Tourism – Iceland and NZ can high five (look at great images)
    Iceland is drowning in tourists.
    Last year more than two million people visited the Scandinavian country, which is home to just 330,000 people living on islands about a third of the size of New Zealand.
    Listen 25′ :26″
    Locals are cashing in on the tourism boom – but as in New Zealand, it’s proving to be a double-edged sword.

    Christianson, a tourist information adviser in the northern city of Akureyri, says Icelanders are becoming increasingly frustrated with having to queue, slow traffic on the ring road that circles the main island, and hearing English rather than Icelandic everywhere they go.

    More worryingly, the millions of pairs of feet trampling on areas of natural beauty is unsustainable, while infrastructure is under intense pressure. Sound familiar?

    • greywarshark 7.1

      Those who have listened to Sec of Treasury, Gabriel Makhlouf about how they propose to include a measure of standard of living progress or decline in their reports, should read this piece by Chris Trotter on Bill Sutton.

      Sutton was one of the keen devotees of Roger Douglas et al – (Roger Douglas, Michael Bassett, Mike Moore and David Lange were Labour Party politicians instrumental in the overthrow of their leader Bill Rowling …) – who went on to introduce us to the dreadful neoiberal, free market that has cost us so much.

      Trotter’s essay quotes David Lange, who tried to withdraw from the Gang of Four, actually throwing out Roger which was disputed and reversed by his colleagues. David referred to Bill Sutton needing a brain transplant but that a compatible rabbit couldn’t be found. Trotter calls that a ‘vicious joke’. I think it was a well-deserved jab, and he might well have referred to a ‘compatible rat’.

      Sutton is a scientist, and latterly a senior policy analyst for about 11 years. He must be suffering from what many scientists (and also many academics) fall prey to, a profound belief in the superiority of his mind and training and the rightness of his own decisions.
      (Sutton has a PhD in biochemistry (Massey University) and worked as a research scientist from 1969 to 1984. After retiring from politics he worked as a senior policy analyst from 1996 to 2007.) Thanks wikipedia

  7. alwyn 8

    Well, so much for the promises made by the Labour Party last year.
    The Manawatu Gorge repair, or replacement is just getting later and later, if it ever happens at all. Even the bypass at Ashurst has gone into limbo.
    Prior to the election the then leader was making brave promises.
    The candidates were making a variety of claims
    “Lees-Galloway said with the arrival of MMP, the days of politicians promising and not delivering were over.
    “It is a leap of faith and you will have to trust we will do that.”

    Now the Ashurst bypass, first promised to be finished by March 2018 hasn’t even started and is merely drifting ever further into the future.
    Is there anything, apart from taking lots and lots of selfies with primary school kids that our current lot of no-hopers has managed?

    • Draco T Bastard 8.1

      Now the Ashurst bypass, first promised to be finished by March 2018 hasn’t even started and is merely drifting ever further into the future.

      So, that would have been a National Party promise then?

      Oh, wait, no – that was NZTA and they’re being held up by the farmers trying to rip off the government.

      This is also the type of problem that happens when you use trucks as the main method of transport rather than trains and ships.

      • alwyn 8.1.1

        Well, if you need the land you can use the Public Works Act, or whatever it might be called these days. That is what is normally done in these circumstances and previous Labour Governments certainly weren’t phased by the idea.
        That is of course what you would have to do if you decided to use the new railways of course for transport but I’m sure you know that. I think it is a great deal more likely that the NZTA have been told not to do anything as the current lot of bunnies in the Government can’t find any money.
        As for using ships. There is a port at Wellington and another one at Napier of course but I’m not really sure that is the answer to transport between the Wairarapa or Southern Hawke’s Bay and the Manawatu.
        I’m afraid you cannot blame the previous National Government for things that the present Government are delaying. Good try but no cigar.

        • Ad

          You’re aware of how long and acquisition under the Public Works Act takes.

          NZTA are in a war of resistance against this government.

          The delays for that one and many others will continue even well after the impending Government Policy Statement.

        • David Mac

          But that’s what works Alwyn. Selfies with school kids and endangered species gets us a Green/Labour govt next time round. We’re living a country where the most popular show on TV is Shortland Street.

          “Hey Mr Polluter, this is how much you’re getting for the farm that’s been in your family for 7 generations, to hell with your skyrocket valuation. Grab your BBQ and Hi Lux and piss off.”…….Not so much, msm suicide.

          • alwyn

            “Selfies with school kids and endangered species”. Well that part is correct although the rest of the sentence is unlikely to be true.
            The endangered species in this is the Green Party, after all. They aren’t likely to survive the next election. I don’t think they will be missed. When you consider the stuff-up their leader has overseen in the Census (under 3 million people recorded) and one of the candidates for the XX chromosome spot is of for a fortnights holiday in New York their work ethic doesn’t really impress.

            • David Mac

              Cool. What’s the weather doing around your parts? Where are you at Alwyn?

            • Incognito

              Alwyn, the quality of your comments is declining 🙁

              When you consider the stuff-up their leader has overseen in the Census (under 3 million people recorded) and one of the candidates for the XX chromosome spot is of for a fortnights holiday in New York their work ethic doesn’t really impress.

              For your edification on Census stats so far:

              Julie Anne Genter, Minister for Women, will lead the New Zealand Government Delegation at the Sixty-Second Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York.

              • alwyn

                I fail to see how you can possibly claim that the quality of my comments is declining. The links you include confirm precisely what I said, don’t they?

                I said.
                1. “Under 3 million people recorded”. Your link says that the total is nearing 3 million. Perfect score I would say.

                2. “Genter is off for a fortnights holiday in New York”. Your link says she is off to attend a session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women in New York. She left on the 10th. The session lasts from the 12th to the 23rd. I suppose you could say that t is only for 12 days, not a fortnight but I’ll bet she is away for more than 14 days.
                Spot on for accuracy

                That looks like a 100% record to me. Do you ever get close to that?

                • Incognito

                  That looks like a 100% record to me. Do you ever get close to that?

                  No, never, my PB is 97% (but that was some time ago) so your 100% hit rate is very impressive indeed.

                  However, I don’t want to burst your well-deserved jubilant and celebratory mood (i.e. your bubble), I really don’t, but you do realise that so far 3 million people have taken part online, don’t you?

                  At the end of the collection process, Stats NZ is aiming for 70 percent of households to have taken part online. [again, my emphasis]

                  But I agree that this amounts to a major “stuff-up” on behalf of the responsible Minister, James Shaw, and he has no choice but to hand in his resignation to the PM.

                  It is just not on that Julie Anne Genter goes to New York for at least (!) a whole fortnight for a meeting of only 12 days, all expenses paid for no doubt, and then does SFA. I double your bet that after that meeting she will be in full holiday mode and will have nothing else on her agenda. What’s worse, she might even rest her feet on a table with the excuse that she’s pregnant!! How long will she be away for again? Heads should roll for this crime to the NZ Taxpayer.

                  It is good that there are still honest people holding this Government to account and in particular that CS faction who call themselves the Green Party – those water melons can never be trusted near power or with NZ Taxpayers money, that’s for sure.

                  And I do apologise; your latest comment was of the superior quality that we have come to relish here. I mean, you cannot argue with 100% accuracy, can you?

                  • alwyn

                    You must have been drinking something very potent.
                    On the other hand I think your comment even exceeds mine in its flamboyance, and I was trying very hard.
                    You win. Your comment is funnier than mine.

                    • Incognito

                      I cannot accept your flattery, Alwyn, it’s embarrassing!

                      It was mint tea, by the way.

    • Nom 8.2

      Alwyn, are you complaining that the Labour/NZ First government have not confiscated the required land to speed up construction?
      From the linked article it sounds like the delays are caused by NZTA negotiating in good faith to acquire the land.
      Do you have any inside knowledge of the situation?

      And what does this bypass have to do with promises made about the new road? AFAIK work/planning on the new road has not been delayed.

      • alwyn 8.2.1

        See my comment to DTB about how you can obtain needed land. It isn’t “confiscation”. You have to pay a fair price and in practice it is the only way that any roads, or railways, can be built.
        As far as the new road is concerned the best we are being promised is that we might hear about options by the end of March. “might”.
        Hardly what Little was saying last year is it?
        “It will be built as quickly as possible, using the powers available to the Government to speed up consenting and planning, and ensuring funding is immediately available.”

        • Nom

          My understanding is that compulsory acquisition via the public works act is usually a last resort. Otherwise why is NZTA currently negotiating rather than acquiring?

          So you agree that there were no pre election promises regarding the delayed Ashhurst bypass?

          Regarding the new road, I have not seen any evidence that that work/planning has been delayed, or that the government is not using all powers available to them. Can you provide any?

  8. Draco T Bastard 9

    This column from Trotter asks a good question:

    It is nothing short of astonishing that the man who aggressively countered his government’s critics with the assertion, “There is no alternative!”, is unable to connect the dots between an economic and political system which insists that it represents the terminus of history, and these rising levels of political disillusionment and despair. If this, the neoliberal world order, is as good as it gets; and if all the truly meaningful decision-making powers have been taken out of the hands of politicians; then what, in God’s name, is the point of casting a vote?

    It is time we took our power back away from the institutions that are designed to keep capitalism going despite it’s obvious failure to provide our society with what it needs.

  9. mary_a 10

    This disgraceful incident should never have been allowed to occur in the first place …

    Woman breaks leg at Middlemore hospital after having epidural for birth! Despite complaining of numbness in her right leg after the birth and having mobility difficulties, the new mother was forced to walk by the duty staff nurse. She fell, causing her right leg to collapse under her, fracturing her tibia!

    The resulting bullshit and spin used by the hospital department management/hierarchy is incredibly mind boggling! What’s the matter with using plain simple language, while also acknowledging the accident was the responsibility of the duty nurse and the hospital, something which is blatantly obvious?

    It will be interesting to see who is held accountable for this woman’s preventable accident while still in the care of the hospital!

    • savenz 10.1

      They will blame the midwife if there is enough fuss. Never the hospital because it’s standard practise to require you to leave within a few hours of giving birth naturally and within 24 hours of a Caesarean. (At least that was what our family was told).

      In the old days people stayed for 7 days in a maternity hospital and were taught how to care for the baby and had meals etc provided so you could concentrate on getting well and bonding.

      Now to save the government money you bundle your newborn into a carseat within hours and have to go else where.

      Possibly that explains our abuse statistics, it’s not exactly a good start for a baby and a Mother or family.

      Also unless you went private you would be hard pressed to see a obstetrician in the leadup and during the birth of a baby.

      After a few days in a birth centre if you choose to go to one, the after care goes to the charity Plunket because the government does not provide any or see the need to provide any government run after birth care.

      • solkta 10.1.1

        My ex just dropped our sprog on a mattress on the lounge floor.

        • alwyn

          I hope it was a very soft mattress. The Police get a bit suspicious about “dropped” claims if the child is hurt.
          (Couldn’t resist that).

          • Incognito

            Arguably, birth & death are the most traumatic experiences in and of life.

            • alwyn

              Or as my Doctor would put it.
              “You must remember that life is a terminal disease”
              My Mother would have been more succinct
              “Nobody gets out of here alive”

              • Incognito

                I’m afraid your doctor was well-conditioned by his professional training at med school because life is a terminal condition, not a disease.

                Your mother was 100% accurate; it seems the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree 😉

      • Stunned Mullet 10.1.2

        Is the government no longer providing funding for ‘Well Child’ services ?

        • savenz

          Theres a different between part funding a charity which needs to fund raise and accept donations from corporates than a fully funding NZ maternity aftercare service that is focused 100% on the job at hand (not fundraising).

          I’d say the neoliberal business model of maternity care is NOT working if you look at the abuse statistics of this county and our poor efforts for children’s care and wellbeing and our dropping ranking is the world on this.

      • greywarshark 10.1.3

        Our birth stats are going down. We aren’t a land of milk and honey and a good place to bring up children any more, except to people who can afford to buy what they need to compensate for NZ basic care, or come from somewhere really crowded, or have been in poverty or a refugee camp.

        There were 1,608 fewer births and 429 fewer deaths compared with 2015.
        The total fertility rate dropped to a low of 1.87 births per woman, compared with an annual average of about 2.02 from 1980–2015.
        The infant mortality rate was 3.6 deaths per 1,000 live births.

        (Between 1980 and 1986 we seemed to be below the natural increase, and are beginning to show now a similar trend.)

        • alwyn

          Our current Government are trying to do something about it.
          Look at the leadership being displayed by Ardern and Genter.

        • McFlock

          Immigration from less fortunate nations can address that.

      • beatie 10.1.4

        When I had my kids in the early 80’s I was allowed to stay in the maternity ward for 5 days.
        For me, it was crucial, because I got the help that I needed to establish breast-feeding. (Not necessarily an easy or straightforward process.

        Sadly several women there switched to bottles because they simply didn’t get the necessary help and advice.

      • McFlock 10.1.5

        One of my colleagues gave birth at night and they wanted to discharge her before 5am, ffs.

        Interesting point about the obs, too. I wonder if there’s an observable socioeconomic bias…

    • Psych nurse 10.2

      There are many reasons for early mobization post anaesthesia, chiefly prevention of thrombsis, if this woman had died of a pulmonary embolism because she was not encouraged to mobilise it would be the health professional still at fault. In the not too distant past women were bed ridden for days post partum and the died of preventable causes, so whats one broken leg compared to the lives saved.

      • greywarshark 10.2.1

        Oh sounds a bit regimented. What is appropriate for this patient at this particular time. Don’t want people afraid of nurses and hospitals do we, no Nurse Ratched stuff.

      • mary_a 10.2.2

        Psych nurse (10.2) …

        I take on board your comparison with life threatening DVTs. However, it is definitely not satisfactory for a new mother to suffer a fractured leg immediate post partum, through staff failure to recognise a problem existed after receiving epidural anaesthesia. This is something which could have been avoided had the nurse been doing her job as an observant, caring health professional. Negligence is not conducive towards a good start for the new mother or her baby.

        During the time I had my two children, it was mandatory for new mothers to rest up, bond with baby and establish good feeding patterns in the maternity hospital, usually for about a week or thereabouts. Most of us mothers were encouraged to move around, at a level that was comfortable for us, but not forced if mobility caused pain or difficulties. Also during that post natal period, the hospital physiotherapist visited, giving appropriate exercise programmes to assist mobility, as well as to prevent DVTs from forming. This system worked quite well for most new mothers and their babies.

        Seems these days good, positive, as well as respectful maternity care is non existent. More the pity!

  10. Craig H 11

    I’d like to see ACC expanded to include sickness – basically turn it into income protection insurance for illness and injury. This could partly be funded by removing the requirement to provide sick leave, and levying employers more on the savings. Any thoughts?

    • KJT 11.1

      That was the original plan.

      Should also cover unemployment.

      It is still a tax, but much more palatable when people can see where it is going and why.

      Pity we cannot stop right wing Governments, however, from treating it like a cash cow, commercial insurance.

    • greywarshark 11.2

      Sick leave can be utilised for other than the worker’s own sickness, no matter what the company allows or is told. It is a safety net for families, though may not be used because of harsh necessity and resentment by the business against those not collapsing at work. My sister was a teacher, very devoted and hard working, and the management of her school were a bit snippy when she needed time off. Don’t think of cutting sick leave is my thought.

      • Craig H 11.2.1

        I definitely agree that retaining leave of some sort for dependents is essential, but that can be included in the ACC rules.

        • greywarshark

          Craig H
          You are so trusting. The ACC rules can be changed, subverted etc. They already are a different beast than when they were started. The things they do to the needy people on their books, and the ones the reject, are not good reading. I think they are reducing costs by putting people’s applications through a computerised system, ie being sorted by robot brains. Some of the humans weren’t so good because the government set pet medical doctors onto them to decide whether they could come in without being bitten, or have to endure a fight. Don’t think ACC is some reliably good organisation to help the community. I think they are something useful because their reserves look good on a balance sheet for the country so we can keep a low interest rate on our borrowing, so we can have some money circulating like a real economy.

          • Craig H

            The Holidays Act can be changed too if the government of the day decides to. Provided the ACC Act sets the entitlements into legislation rather than regulations, it’s as safe (or not) as any other legislative entitlement.

            • greywarshark

              Too much power in one hands can create misery. Don’t think you quite understand how our government slowly has unwound, and sometimes quickly, legislative entitlements. Sorry to burst your bubble.

  11. adam 12

    Because laughing is helpful. Samantha Bee on the twitter and chief. 7.03 long.

  12. Ad 13

    National reshuffle done.

    It’s going to be Judith Collins versus Phil Twyford in the transport and urban development portfolios.

    He can take her no probs.

    But it will be fireworks.

    • chris73 13.1

      I don’t think he can, I think hes about to find out how difficult the job can really be

      • joe90 13.1.1

        Collins couldn’t take a car off an 18 year old yob and I doubt she’ll fare any better against Twyford.

        • chris73

          The point wasn’t to see how many cars could be crushed it was to stop the cars being in such way they would be crushed

          The yobs cut way down on what they were doing so Jude scored a major win on that point

          And shes number 4 with a portfolio that will see her get media attention so any faltering in the polls and Jude can lead National to the promised land so its a win-win-win situation all round (except for Twyford and Labour of course)

          • joe90

            Major win my arse.

            Much to her embarrassment, the 18 year old yob took Colllins’ ministry on wild goose chase, and won.

          • Graeme

            The Government, and it’s Minister, Phil Twyford what to build shitloads of houses.. Lots of New Zealanders want shitloads of houses built, fast. The National Party, and it’s aspiring leader, Judith Collins want to stop them doing this.

            What could possibly go wrong …..

          • Brigid

            “The yobs cut way down on what they were doing so Jude scored a major win on that point”

            No they didn’t 🙂

            It’s what you’d like to think I know but nah we, oops, they, didn’t..

          • Macro

            The yobs cut way down on what they were doing
            Yeah Right!
            What planet are you on again?

  13. Ed 14

    Rich and entitled humans torture sentient beings.
    For sport.

  14. Olwyn 15

    This weekend I keep going back to this piece on Paul Keating’s latest utterances in the SMH.

    What gets me is not just what Keating says, but the conditions that underpin it. It seems as if the “professional politicians” that replaced the old representative ones are inhibited from meaningfully engaging in realpolitik, due to their subservience to corporate and financial interests. The fact is, the whole world did not magically transform into dedicated adherents to the so-called Washington Consensus, and their response has been limited to bullying and cajoling those who have not succumbed: “It won’t happen overnight, but it will happen”, they seem to think. Keating refers to this approach as a “lack of strategy” and praises Trump for at least trying.

    The last two sentences: Mr Keating said Russia had the power to “obliterate” the US, and urged Mr Trump to maintain a workable relationship with the Kremlin.
    “Russia alone has the capacity to obliterate the United States. If you’re a country that lives under the threat of obliteration, you generally should have a policy.”

  15. Stuart Munro 16

    I wonder if we should campaign to oust David Parker for signing the TPP. He hasn’t kept his promises. It isn’t in the public interest. And most importantly it won’t bring down the coalition. But it will make them think long and hard before shafting New Zealand again.

  16. joe90 17

    Wearing it on his sleeve.

    The President went to Pennsylvania, singled out a black Congresswoman from California, and called her stupid. That’s not race-baiting. That’s racist.— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) March 11, 2018

    Two weeks in a row. Apparently the president calling a black Congresswoman “low IQ” is part of the stump speech now.— Matthew Miller (@matthewamiller) March 11, 2018

  17. joe90 18

    Channeling the Romanovs.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin has suggested Jews and other minorities in Russia, including Tatars and Ukranians, could be to blame for meddling in the US presidential election.

    “Maybe they’re not even Russians,” he told NBC News. “Maybe they’re Ukrainians, Tatars, Jews, just with Russian citizenship. Even that needs to be checked.”

    • Stunned mullet 18.1

      Nah that’s fine it’s not racism unless you photoshop his head onto Oprah.

  18. joe90 19

    Perhaps tRump has no intention of being voted out.

    BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts state secretary William Galvin is strongly opposing President Donald Trump’s proposal to dispatch Secret Service agents to polling places during federal elections.

    A provision of the Homeland Security reauthorization bill would allow armed Secret Service agents to enter polling locations at the direction of the President. Galvin says he is “horrified that this is even under consideration.”

  19. OncewasTim 20

    Says you. You are of course the voice of reason….and a legend in you’re own mind.

  20. OncewasTim 21

    TS …. something in recent times you come to love to hate.
    The commenters with such a love of their own arseholes and self-adjuged intelligence. The egos. The dried up old public servants trying to remain relevant as contributors (probably … i was going to mention Paekakariki or Browns Bay …. best not go there or it’ll provoke an Ad-like epistle justifying ilk and neo-lib, or at least neo-lib-lite ideology).
    An ability to sympathise rather than empathise….there goes the progressive Chardonnay TVNZ7 leftie.
    Time is running out though folks. The game is up…. which is why NZ elected a change. Hopefully the MMP govts participants may soon come to realise what put them there, and why, and what is expected of them.

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  • An increasingly shoddy coverup
    The Operation Burnham inquiry continued to question senior NZDF staff today, and their shoddy coverup over their knowledge of civilian casualties continue to fall apart. If you recall, first, we were asked to believe that it was all a series of "mistakes and errors": a senior officer with multiple degrees ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • If we are to avoid making the earth uninhabitable, we need to rapidly decarbonise our civilisation, and cut emissions to zero as quickly as possible. This seems like an impossible task, but its not. Pushing hard on a few technologies and trends will let us halve emissions in a decade:Greenhouse ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • A further attack on transparency
    The Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) had part of its committee stage yesterday. its a generally tedious bill about the nitty-gritty of local government reorganisation. But it includes a clause making the Local Government Commission subject to the Ombudsmen Act, and hence the OIA. Great! Except of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Ihumātao and Treaty settlements
    Yesterday Ihumātao's mana whenua reached a consensus that they would like their land back, and asked the government to negotiate with Fletcher's for its return. The government's response? Try and undermine that consensus, while talking about how doing anything would undermine existing Treaty settlements. The first is just more bad ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Protecting our history
    Its Suffrage Day, the 126th anniversary of women winning the right to vote (but not stand in elections) in New Zealand. And to celebrate, the government has bought Kate Sheppard's house in Christchurch:The government has bought Kate Sheppard's former home in Christchurch for more than $4 million. The Ilam villa ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Climate Change: Ostracising the coal-burners
    The UN climate summit is happening in new York next week, and unlike previous years, coal-burners and denier-states are not being invited to speak:Leading economies such as Japan and Australia will not be invited to speak at next week’s crunch UN climate change summit, as their continued support for coal ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    3 days ago
  • Jojo Tamihere Salutes Herr Goff.
    Get Back Jojo! The elation in Mayor Phil Goff’s camp may be easily imagined as they watched social media light up in indignation at challenger John Tamihere’s "Sieg Heil to that" quip. Just when JT’s notoriously right-wing, sexist and homophobic stains were beginning to fade back into his ‘colourful’ past, ...
    3 days ago
  • Hard News: A fun but flawed weed documentary
    Patrick Gower is good value when he's high. Not that I've ever, you know, got stoned with him. But in the second part of his documentary Patrick Gower on Weed, he does what you'd expect in a modern weed documentary and immerses himself – first with a doctor, then a ...
    3 days ago
  • Candidate Survey: Western Bay of Plenty – Local Body Elections 2019
    We surveyed candidates on their attitudes to issues facing the Western Bay Region, find out what they think: “Closing the Gap” Tauranga, one of the area groups of Income Equality Aotearoa NZ Inc., has surveyed all candidates in the three local body elections to discover attitudes to some basic issues ...
    Closing the GapBy Tracey Sharp
    4 days ago
  • Project Nettie calls on scientists to defend biology
    Please spread widely, and sign, to support science and rationalism over the new irrationalism sweeping universities and institutions.  PROJECT NETTIE Sexual reproduction, the generation of offspring by fusion of genetic material from two different individuals, evolved over 1 billion years ago. It is the reproductive strategy of all higher animals ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • I’m glad I don’t live in Auckland
    Just when I was thinking that Palmerston North's mayoral race (which includes a convicted child molester / public wanker and a convicted child beater) was the worst in the country, Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere opened his mouth:Auckland mayoral candidate John Tamihere is being slammed for using the words "sieg ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • Index of Power Update, 2018-19: China #2
    We reprint below an article from the excellent website the Economics of Imperialism by Tony Norfield This is an update of the statistics for my Index of Power, using data for 2018-19 and discussing what a country’s ranking reflects. The major change is that China’s rank has shifted up and ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    4 days ago
  • Climate Change: A history lesson
    Why is New Zealand climate change policy so crap? The Herald this morning has a long article on the twists and turns of climate change policy in New Zealand [paywalled / depaywall script], which shows where we've been. The short version is that the government first began worrying about this ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    4 days ago
  • What the All Blacks Mean to Us
    The All Blacks have been, for more than a century, arguably the most successful International sports team in the world. But they are more than that; even for those Kiwis who are immune to the charms of rugby (and there are more than a few), the All Blacks are ambassadors ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    4 days ago
  • No one is born into the wrong body
    A short and incredibly powerful speech from a young lesbian woman. No one is born in the wrong body. ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Contempt
    Back in June, the UK Court of Appeal ruled that that country's continued arms sales to Saudi Arabia were unlawful. So you'd expect that the UK government stopped approving them, right?Of course not:The government has apologised for breaching a court ruling against the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Covering up the cover-up
    Yesterday NZDF officials were put on the stand about the lies they had told over Operation Burnham, making implausible claims that it was all a big mistake. But along the way, we learned they had already been put on the spot about it by a previous Defence Minister, who had ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Not as important as they think they are
    Farmers have been whining a lot lately, about the methane targets in the Zero Carbon Bill, about Canterbury's proposed nitrogen limits, and about the government's new proposals to stop them from shitting in our lakes and rivers. These policies are "throwing farmers under the tractor", they will force farmers off ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    5 days ago
  • Behind Every Good Woman Should Stand – Another Good Woman.
    Alone, Alone, All, All, Alone: To argue that the Prime Minister is the victim of her advisers’ failure to keep her informed may offer Jacinda some measure of exoneration – but only at the cost of casting her as a hopeless political ingénue. A star-dusted muppet, whose only purpose is to ...
    5 days ago
  • Poor quality, poorly educated kiddie ‘Journalists’ spreading fake news
    In times of hysteria about the “World coming to an end” and “rising sea levels” so-called ‘Journalists’ who can barely spell words longer than four letters are having a ball! Though the majority of the Public have worked out that manmade climate change is nothing short of pseudo-science, and the ...
    An average kiwiBy
    5 days ago
  • Chris Trotter on the BFD
    I don't want to give pblicity to certain parts of the internet that are better left to fester in their own irrelevance (I know, a bit like this place) but the listing of Chris Trotter as a 'author' on Cameron Slater's spinoff website, the BFD requires some explanation.Now, I don't ...
    5 days ago
  • Sex is not a spectrum
    The text below is a Twitter thread by Heather Heying that explains the essence of sexual reproduction and it long evolutionary history. She is an evolutionary biologist and a “professor-in-exile” after she and her husband, Bret Weinstein, stood up to supporters of an enforced “Day of Absence” for white staff and teachers ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    5 days ago
  • Climate Change: Trees, aviation, and offsets
    With crunch time for new Zealand climate policy approaching, most of the New Zealand media have got on board with a global reporting effort to cover the issue. There's one strand of stories today about polling and what it shows about changing public attitudes to the crisis, but the strand ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Pissing-Off The Israelis Is A High-Risk Strategy.
    Dangerous Foes: For those readers of Bowalley Road who feel disposed to dismiss any prospect of an Israeli destabilisation of New Zealand politics, the example of the United Kingdom repays close attention. Ever since the election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party, the Israelis have sanctioned, funded and ...
    6 days ago
  • Something to go to in Wellington
    Make It 16, the youth-led campaign to lower New Zealand's voting age, is holding an official campaign launch at Parliament this Friday from 16:30. If you'd like to attend, you can register using EventBrite here. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • A founding member responds to Peace Action Wellington
    by Don Franks It was a lovely sunny Wellington afternoon with blue skies above  the beaches.  In Courtenay Place, political activists packed out a stuffy upstairs room for an important meeting. The assembled pacifists, anarchists, communists and independent young radicals of Peace Action Wellington felt the need for a mission ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    6 days ago
  • “Mistakes and errors”
    Current and former NZDF top brass are being publicly grilled this week by the hit and run inquiry over their public responses to allegations of civilian casualties. Previously, they've claimed there were no casualties, a position which led them to lie to Ministers and to the public. Now, they're saying ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • “Homosexuality is same-sex attraction and relationships, not heterosexuals with delusions of gende...
    by Rafael D. Quiles (gender-critical gay man from Puerto Rico) The writing on the wall is right in people’s faces and people just don’t see it or don’t want to. What could actually possess a heterosexual male to want to feminize himself and claim that he is a lesbian? Because ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    7 days ago
  • Trump: “Where’s my favourite dictator?”
    From the Wall Street Journal:Inside a room of the ornately decorated Hotel du Palais during last month’s Group of Seven summit in Biarritz, France, President Trump awaited a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi. Mr. Trump looked over a gathering of American and Egyptian officials and called out in ...
    7 days ago
  • Magdalen Burns, 1983-2019, fighter for women’s liberation
    by the Redline blog collective At Redline we are very saddened to hear of the death of Magdalen Burns who passed away on the morning of Friday, September 13 (British time). Magdalen was a great fighter for the rights of women in general and lesbian women in particular, a defender ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Parliament and the Executive
    The Brexit issue has certainly brought with it a series of apparently difficult constitutional issues, many of them concerning the respective roles of the executive and parliament. Most of them arise because of the unwillingness of MPs, despite their professions to the contrary, to be bound by a constitutional rarity ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    1 week ago
  • The Abigail Article; Martyn Bradbury’s Article, and My Response
    . . This blogpost is different to my usual format of reporting on issues… Since July 1011, I have blogged on a variety of political issues; near always political and/or environmental; mostly highly critical of the previous National Government. Other issues included Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands and repression of ...
    Frankly SpeakingBy Frank Macskasy
    1 week ago
  • Police will have to wear silly Buckingham Palace hats from now on, says Police Minister
    Those close to the Police Minister believe the initiative may be the result of Nash “seeing a great deal” on AliExpress. In a move that comes seemingly out of nowhere, Police Minister Stuart Nash announced this afternoon that he expects all frontline staff to don bearskin hats, famously worn by ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • A sensible crackdown
    The government has released its Arms Legislation Bill, containing the second tranche of changes to gun laws following the March 15 massacre. And it all looks quite sensible: a national gun register, higher penalties for illegal possession and dealing, tighter restrictions on arms dealers and shooting clubs, and a shorter ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • California bans private prisons
    Private prisons are a stain on humanity. Prison operators explicitly profit from human misery, then lobby for longer prisons terms so they can keep on profiting. And in the US, prison companies run not only local and state prisons, but also Donald Trump's immigration concentration camps. Faced with this moral ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Why PPPs are a bad idea
    When National was in power, they were very keen on Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) - basicly, using private companies to finance public infrastructure as a way of hiding debt from the public. They were keen on using them for everything - roads, schools, hospitals. But as the UK shows, that "service" ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • A Movement That No Longer Moves.
    Moving And Shaking: There was a time when people spoke matter-of-factly about the “labour movement” – a political phenomenon understood to embrace much more than the Labour Party. Included within the term’s definition was the whole trade union movement – many of whose members looked upon the Labour Party as ...
    1 week ago
  • NZ ‘left’ politically embracing extreme postmodernism
    by Philip Ferguson Much of the left, even people who formally identify as marxists, have collapsed politically in the face of postmodern gender theory of the sort pioneered by American philosopher Judith Butler. For Butler even biological sex is socially constructed. “If the immutable character of sex is contested, perhaps ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • The obvious question
    The media is reporting that the (alleged) Labour party sexual assaulter has resigned from their job at Parliament, which means hopefully he won't be turning up there making people feel unsafe in future. Good. But as with everything about this scandal, it just raises other questions. Most significantly: why the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The moment I found out that you found out, I acted swiftly
    By Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern I am every bit as angry as you are. I am every bit as disappointed as you must be. The people with power, oversight and the ability to do something about these processes within the Labour Party should be ashamed. Whoever those people are, I ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    1 week ago
  • This is why people hate property developers
    Property developers think there is an "oversupply" of houses in Auckland:High turnover rates and falling prices may be a sign that there are too many new houses going in to some parts of Auckland, commentators say. [...] Property developer David Whitburn said there was a "bit of an oversupply" in ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Australia to Pacific: “Fuck you, you can all drown”
    World leaders are meeting in New York in two weeks for the 2019 Climate Action Summit, where they are expected to announce new and more ambitious targets to stop the world from burning. But the Australian Prime Minister won't be there, despite being in the USA at the time:Scott Morrison ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Implausible ignorance
    Labour Party president Nigel Haworth resigned yesterday over the party's sexual assault scandal. But while that's good news, its unlikely to take away the stench of a coverup. Because according to Paula Bennett in Parliament yesterday, pretty much everyone in the Prime Minister's office was involved as well:I have been ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Labour’s Fatal Flaw.
     Two-Faced? Labour insiders' commitment to the neoliberal status quo puts them at odds with their party’s membership; its trade union affiliates; and a majority of Labour voters, but this only serves to strengthen the perception they have of themselves as a special elite. Among the lesser breeds, they’ll talk up a ...
    1 week ago
  • Ten reasons the Tories do NOT want an election
    There has been a lot of talk about Boris Johnson wanting an election, and he has blustered with great gusto about 'chicken' Jeremy Corbyn refusing one, but I think there are many reasons why he is secretly glad he has been refused the opportunity:The Tories are an utter rabble,tearing themselves ...
    1 week ago
  • Prorogation Illegal, rule Scottish judges
    Scottish appeal court judges have declared that Boris Johnson’s decision to suspend parliament in the run-up to the October Brexit deadline is unlawful. The three judges, chaired by Lord Carloway, Scotland’s most senior judge, overturned an earlier ruling that the courts did not have the powers to interfere in the prime ...
    1 week ago
  • Let me explain what I meant by Everyday New Zealanders
    By Simon Bridges. The following is a press release from the office of Simon Bridges, leader of The National Party. Key ora, New Zealand. Happy Maori Language Week. Look, I’m writing to you today because I want to clear something up. There’s been a lot of kerfuffle around some things ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Yes, the SIS is subject to the Public Records Act
    I understand there's some stuff going round about how the SIS "was removed from the list of public offices covered by the Public Records Act in 2017". The context of course being their records derived from US torture, which will be disposed of or sealed. The good news is that ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
    Dr. Christopher Labos and Jonathan Jarry discuss the recent Canadian fluoride/IQ research. They provide an expert analysis of the paper and its problems. Click on image to go to podcast. The critical debate about the recent ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Australia in denial
    Australia is burning down again, and meanwhile its natural disaster minister is denying climate change:Australia’s minister responsible for drought and natural disasters, David Littleproud, has said that he doesn’t “know if climate change is manmade”. Clarifying earlier comments that the question is “irrelevant” when considering the Coalition government’s response to ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Philippines activist speaking on the Duterte tyranny
    Auckland Philippines Solidarity is excited to host Professor Judy Taguiwalo for a speaking tour of NZ in September. She is a well-known activist in the Philippines and was a political prisoner under the Marcos dictatorship. Professor Taguiwalo briefly served as a Cabinet member under President Duterte but was forced from ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Disgust
    I have no special insights to offer on the Labour sexual assault coverup. All I have is disgust. Disgust that an organisation could fail its people so badly. Disgust that they punished the victims rather than the perpetrator. Disgust that its party hacks are apparently blaming the victims for demanding ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Speak Up for Women calls out Greens’ censorship
    This open letter to the Green Party was penned after an opinion piece by Jill Abigail, a feminist and founding member of the party, was censored by the Greens’ leadership. (Redline has reprinted her article here).The intolerance of the Green Party leaders and their acceptance of the misogyny of gender ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    2 weeks ago
  • Member’s Day: End of Life Choice, part 3
    Today is a Member's day, and David Seymour's End of Life Choice Bill continues its slow crawl through its committee stage. They're spending the whole day on it today, though the first hour is likely to be spent on voting left over from last time. After that they'll move on ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Flight to Los Angeles turned back after passengers decide they don’t want to go anymore
    An ambitious plan to fly to Los Angeles petered out into a brief sight-seeing trip and a desire to return home and get some sleep before work tomorrow. Air New Zealand has confirmed a flight to Los Angeles last night was turned back about a quarter of the way into ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Indigenous Futures: defuturing and futuring – an analytical framework for policy development?
    There appears to be consensus – by omission – that the concept of indigenous futures should be accepted at face value. So I scavenged the internet to see if I could locate an academic descriptor or a framework around how we think about it as a concept, and whether it ...
    EllipsisterBy Ellipsister
    2 weeks ago
  • Cadbury rumoured to be releasing the Pineapple Trump
    Here’s another novelty chocolate to shove in your gob, New Zealand Cadbury could be seeking to make itself great again with a rumoured new release: Pineapple Trumps, a spin on its classic chocolate-encased pineapple treat and do-it-yourself tooth remover. The global confectionery manufacturer and bumbling “before” character in an infomercial, ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • The coming resource war.
    During my time in the Pentagon I had the privilege of sitting down with military leaders and defence and security officials from a variety of Latin American nations. Sometimes I was present as a subordinate assistant to a senior US defence department official, sometimes as part of a delegation that ...
    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Language Week with The Civilian
    Kia ora, Aotearoa. It’s that magical time of year. Te Wiki o te Reo Māori. In English, the week that frightens talk radio. As you probably know by now, all your favourite media outlets are participating, some more successfully than others. Stuff has changed its name to Puna for the ...
    The CivilianBy admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Will Horizons act on climate change?
    Local body elections are coming up next month. And it looks like all Palmerston North candidates for Horizons (the Manawatu-Whanganui Regional Council) want to take action on climate change:Climate change is set to be a key issue in Palmerston North for the next three years if those wanting to get ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • BORA reform is stalled
    Eighteen months ago, the government promised to strengthen the Bill of Rights Act, by explicitly affirming the power of the courts to issue declarations of inconsistency and requiring Parliament to formally respond to them. So how's that going? I was curious, so I asked for all advice about the proposal. ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Corbyn and Brexit
    As the Brexit saga staggers on, the focus is naturally enough on the Prime Minister and his attempts to achieve Brexit “do or die”. But the role played by the Leader of the Opposition is of almost equal interest and complexity. The first problem for Jeremy Corbyn is that he ...
    Bryan GouldBy Bryan Gould
    2 weeks ago
  • A ditch for him to die in
    Last week, English Prime Minister Boris Johnson boldly declared that he would rather die be dead in a ditch than delay Brexit. Unfortunately for him, the UK parliament accepted the challenge, and promptly dug one for him. The "rebellion bill" requires him to ask for and secure yet another temporary ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • Warning! Warning! Danger Jacinda Ardern! Danger Marama Davidson! Warning!
    Lost In Political Space: The most important takeaway from this latest Labour sexual assault scandal, which (if I may paraphrase Nixon’s White House counsel’s, John Dean’s, infamous description of Watergate) is “growing like a cancer” on the premiership, is the Labour Party organisation’s extraordinary professional paralysis in the face of ...
    2 weeks ago

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